The two corporate giants hope to turn coffee beans into car parts.
Ford and McDonald’s USA will soon be turning coffee chaff (the dried skin of the bean that comes off during the roasting process) into a durable material that can reinforce certain vehicle parts like headlamp housings and some interior and under hood components.
According to Ford, these components can be about 20% lighter and require up to 25% less energy during the molding process.
“McDonald’s commitment to innovation was impressive to us and matched our own forward-thinking vision and action for sustainability,” said Debbie Mielewski, Ford senior technical leader, sustainability and emerging materials research team. “This has been a priority for Ford for over 20 years, and this is an example of jump starting the closed-loop economy, where different industries work together and exchange materials that otherwise would be side or waste products.”
McDonald’s and Ford plan to continue exploring ways to collaboratively use waste as a resource.